Diego Schwartzman has broken into the world’s top 20 for the first time after he beat Fernando Verdasco to win the Rio Open on Sunday evening.
Claiming his second title – his first was the Istanbul Open in 2016 – his run in Brazil also saw him up to a career-high of 18 in the ATP rankings – leapfrogging Andy Murray in the process and becomes the first Jewish player to break into the top 20 since 1990.
Sunday’s win over Verdasco was achieved in commanding fashion, the 25-year-old winning the match 6-2, 6-3 in the clay court event at the Jockey Club Brasileiro.
Speaking after his win, he said: “This title is for my family, my friends and my aunt who is having a hard time.”
“I never thought before the week that I [was]going to be here with the trophy, it’s an amazing week for me. Everything was perfect; every match, every set was perfect for me, playing my best tennis. I am really happy and trying to enjoy… [but] in a few hours I take a plane!”
His preparation for the French Open continues this week when he takes part in the Acapulco Open in Mexico.